Thousands of terminally-ill cancer patients could be denied life-extending drugs under new plans from the NHS rationing body, charities say.
The National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (Nice) will today announce proposals to change the way it decides which medicines the health service should fund.
The body was asked to change its funding formulas to ensure the NHS gets best value from the drugs it funds.
But last night charities said the new proposals amounted to a “devastating” attack on cancer sufferers – which could mean more than 12,000 terminally-ill patients a year are denied drugs they currently receive.
Under its existing formula, Nice uses “end of life” criteria to approve some drugs if they are the only hope of extending life, and might otherwise have been ruled out on cost grounds.
Back a while, when Labour was running the NHS, Polly argued that of course there was rationing and that obviously, we shouldn’t spend vast sums prolonging life for a few weeks or months. Wonder if she’ll hold to that or will this become another evil Tories killing off the poor old folk thing?